I'M currently just after qualifying with a Canadian licence, and want to get back closer to home sooner rather than later.
So what are the realistic qualifications for working as a commercial heli pilot in Ireland or the UK? Is a JAA an absolute must, or is there an Irish/UK licence that you can work on? And what are the conversion requirements, and costs? I'm not too keen on doing the JAA, it seems like a lot of hassle, time, and money!
Whats the minimum number of hours you would need, and are employers picky about turbine versus piston time, and would mountain training or slinging be of any benefit in the Irish/UK market?
Also, someone was telling me that an instrument rating is strongly recommended for working in Ireland, is this true? And would it be helpful if I had the FAA licence?
And finally....what sort of money could I be expecting?
Bloody hell I don't ask for much, do I?
Traditionally the best way of working your way into the system was as an instructor, but even there things are quieter, and there is a bit of a glut of instructors at the minute.
There is no such thing as a UK or Irish licence any more, only JAA (soon to be EASA). A JAA CPL is a must (as far as I'm concerned).
As for the IR, do a search for the IR thread in pprune to see wheather 'you feel lucky' enough to gamble that much money on it.
I know of guys who are going to Canada as there seem to be more opportunities there.
The UK is a bigger market than Ireland so some more possibilities there, but very little chance of walking into a job without a JAA Instructor rating at a minimum, unless you have several thousand turbine hours.
It's batten down the hatches time at the minute!
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